Woodworking Talk banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,801 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Here is a how to on making a pair of winding sticks, an indispensable tool if you plan on flattening/thicknessing boards by hand.

Start with 2 pieces of contrasting wood approximately the same length. I chose maple and walnut as it was what I had on hand. The darker stick is about 2", the lighter stick is 2.5"

image-1845018813.jpg

First plane 1 face flat on both boards. Mark that face as your reference face.


image-4291802620.jpg


Next plane one edge square to that face. This is now your reference edge.


image-3198990441.jpg



image-4220819657.jpg


Using a marking gauge, mark the width you wish to plane to on both faces. (Sorry forgot to get pics on the maple and the walnut you couldn't see it). By planing down to your marked line on a slight bevel, this will let you plane to the proper width quickly. Make sure this second edge is also square to the face and that the board is uniform width.

Once you have this done, it's time to glue them up. A simple rub joint is all that is needed, no clamps :yes: Just spread a light bead of glue on both mating surfaces and rub them back and forth until you start to feel them get sticky. Let them sit for at least a couple of hours. These will sit overnight.

image-1638308416.jpg



I'll resume on Saturday morning, stay tuned.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,801 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
I started today by marking out the cut lines for separating the glued up sticks. You want to leave about 1/4 inch of lighter wood attached to the dark wood. I marked two lines, makes it easier to keep the cut straight cutting between 2 lines versus trying to cut to just one.


image-3818526426.jpg


Once the boards are cut apart, you'll need to re-plane the cut edges. The light stick needs to be perfectly parallel again, otherwise the winding sticks won't accurately reflect what's happening in the board you're checking. The lighter strip on the dark stick doesn't need to be perfectly parallel as the joint between the two is your reference.

Next you want to shape or taper the sticks. This helps lower the center of gravity so they don't tip over easily. To do this I decided to make the top 1/3 the thickness of the bottom. I marked this out with some dividers, scribed a line on each end and then used a marking gauge to mark the top. (I've penciled in the scribed line to make it easier to see) Now just plane down to your lines.


image-595256922.jpg



image-1397224479.jpg



image-433679351.jpg

Here's one face done. Now just repeat on the other face and do the same thing on the darker stick.

image-4254141765.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,801 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Now that you have the sticks shaped like you want them it's time to trim the ends. A pleasing angle is easy to set, just set the inset of the cut to the thickness of the stock.


image-3123819388.jpg


Using holdfasts takes stress off your hands and allows for a more precise cut.


image-1904773321.jpg


After you've cut all four ends, clean them up on your shoot board.

image-3383300102.jpg



Lastly, ease the edges with a block plane and apply a coat or two of shellac. I used a 2lb cut of super blond. Don't use oils, poly's or varnishes as they will affect the color more than the shellac, making your crisp line between the walnut and maple harder to see clearly.

image-3807635973.jpg
This pic is before the shellac, I'll post a finished pic a bit later. But that's all there is to a pair of winding sticks.
 

·
master sawdust maker
Joined
·
437 Posts
Sweet write up, thank you!
 

·
Chairman of the 'Board
Joined
·
285 Posts
I saw a reference to winding sticks, but I am still unsure as to their use. Are you just eyeballing the two from a distance here? Is this that accurate? Do we have to worry about looking square over? I guess I am asking for some detailed directions on these winding sticks.

BTW, great write up. Thanks!
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
7,222 Posts
I saw a reference to winding sticks, but I am still unsure as to their use. Are you just eyeballing the two from a distance here? Is this that accurate? Do we have to worry about looking square over? I guess I am asking for some detailed directions on these winding sticks.
Nice build, thanks.

Sawdust final picture is showing how they are used to show if there is any twist (aka wind) in a planed surface.

Perhaps the Lee Valley link will give you a better idea.
http://www.leevalley.com/US/wood/page.aspx?p=53276&cat=1,230,41182
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,801 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
As with anything due to alignment, you want to be looking at these as straight on/square as possible so as not to distort the image. you want to also set your eyes so that you see a small sliver of the dark wood as this makes it easier to see a variation in the overall thickness thereby indicating a high spot. The great hing about winding sticks is that they will magnify even the smallest of twist on the smallest boards (provided you made them true! :laughing:)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
247 Posts
I read in a book about winding sticks and the guy used just two square sticks that were not clued up that way.The winding sticks you made I assume that they its just easier to sight down them?or are they just 2 differnt types of winding sticks for 2 differnt tasks?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,801 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Just nicer looking, easier to sight due to the contrasting color and a good practice of several important hand tool skills.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
247 Posts
ok maybe ill make a set I like to do stuff around my shop for honing in my handtool skills like displays for my antique tools that etc. use,thanx for info and time, chris
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,801 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I'll try. When planing the pyramid shape, mark your top and bottom lines with a marking gauge. Tip your plane a bit and take one edge of the face very close to the line. Repeat this for the other edge. Now you just have a high spot in the middle to plane away. When this gets down, you're entire face will be flat and you'll have the desired shape you want.

If this still doesn't make sense, I'll take some more pics and post again, but won't be able to get to that until the weekend. Just let me know if you need me to do that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,801 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Yep. Basically it just takes each edge of the face down close first and then you bring the middle down to match. Helps keep you from taking more off one edge and getting a not parallel piece.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top